Twitter has suspended distinguished backers of the QAnon conspiracy concept, citing a possible for “offline hurt.” NBC News reporter Ben Collins reported the ban of former Trump administration nationwide safety advisor Michael Flynn, former Trump lawyer Sidney Powell, and former 8kun administrator Ron Watkins. Different main QAnon accounts have apparently been banned as properly.
Twitter advised NBC Information that the accounts have been suspended below Twitter’s “coordinated dangerous exercise” ban. “We’ve been clear that we’ll take sturdy enforcement motion on habits that has the potential to result in offline hurt, and given the renewed potential for violence surrounding one of these habits within the coming days, we’ll completely droop accounts which are solely devoted to sharing QAnon content material,” a spokesperson mentioned.
Flynn and Powell have each promoted theories linked to QAnon, a sprawling conspiracy motion united in opposition to a nonexistent cabal of devil-worshipping pedophiles. Flynn was convicted of mendacity to the FBI, however he was pardoned by President Donald Trump and has develop into a QAnon evangelist. Powell has been instrumental in selling false claims that the 2020 presidential election was rigged, main Dominion Voting Methods to file a defamation suit against her earlier at present. Watkins previously helped run 8kun (previously 8chan), the nameless message board the place QAnon head Q posts cryptic messages to followers. Researchers speculate Q may be multiple people, and each Ron and his father Jim Watkins have been named as potential Q authors.
Twitter is late in taking motion in opposition to the group. Fb banned QAnon content in 2020, calling the group a “militarized social motion.” TikTok likewise banned QAnon content for violating its disinformation coverage. Till lately, nevertheless, Twitter hosted a few of QAnon’s most high-profile figures. That included the names above, in addition to David Hayes (referred to as “Praying Medic”), a significant QAnon concept interpreter and a part of a bunch that sued YouTube for its own QAnon crackdown final fall.
QAnon supporters have been among the many Trump backers who mobbed the US Capitol earlier this week, attempting to overturn the outcomes of the US presidential election. Trump himself has additionally expressed help for QAnon, calling its supporters “those that love our nation.”